Sail from French Polynesia to Fiji via Wallis and Futuna, us aboard Le Soléal for a 13-day cruise in the South Pacific Ocean.
PONANT brings you an exceptional itinerary of idyllic beaches, turquoise waters, and encounters with little-known cultures.
After a first stop in Bora Bora, with its unmistakable volcanic silhouette, you will reach the Cook Islands and the clear blue waters of the Aitutaki lagoon.
You will then discover Samoa, where the memory of Robert Louis Stevenson, the famous Scottish poet and author of Treasure Island, lives on.
Then you will sail to Wallis and Futuna, small pieces of France lost in the Pacific, also the flag state of the PONANT fleet. In particular, you will visit the Basilica of Poi in Futuna, an important pilgrimage site in Oceania, as well as Lake Lalolalo in Wallis.
On Taveuni, also known as “the garden island”, you will visit the magnificent Bouma Falls, nestling amid lush, tropical vegetation, and will meet local school children for a rich moment of exchange.
- Discovery of French Polynesia, the Cook Islands, Samoa, Wallis and Futuna and Fiji.
- Southern sea lagoons, white-sand beaches and lush vegetation – a picture postcard of paradise.
- Encounters with the locals and opportunities to discover Polynesian cultures during traditional ceremonies.
- An itinerary that will sail via Wallis and Futuna, where the PONANT fleet is registered.
- Possibility of diving (PADI Open Water Diver or equivalent) with an experienced instructor on board.
Day 1 PAPEETE, TAHITI ISLAND
Capital of French Polynesia, the city of Papeete is on the north-west coast of the island of Tahiti. You’ll find a relaxed atmosphere here, where urban buzz combines with the legendary laid-back Polynesian lifestyle. Culture is not lacking. You can enjoy sites narrating the history of the archipelago, including the colonial cathedral and the Maison de la reine Marau. The Vaipahi public gardens will win you over by their abundant plant-life. The large municipal market offers local specialities: fresh fruit, spices and all kinds of fish abound on their stalls.
Day 2 BORA BORA, SOCIETY ISLANDS
Paradisiacal atoll of the archipelago of the Leeward Islands, west of French Polynesia, mythical Bora-Bora offers a natural spectacle of captivating beauty. You’ll be won over as much by the white sandy beaches as by its famous lagoon, one of the most beautiful in the world, where colourful fish frolic in waters of incomparable turquoise. The island is covered with tropical vegetation, and dominated by the majestic outline of Mount Otemanu. A promenade through this volcanic landscape will enable you to discover a number of villages and meet local communities.
Day 3 AT SEA
During your day at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This day without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the PONANT photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observer marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.
Day 4 AITUTAKI
Aitutaki is a little island of 16 km², with a small fishing port with few motor boats, where a simple and peaceful life endures. During your visit, don’t miss the opportunity to walk along this magnificent lagoon, reputed as one of the most beautiful and spectacular in the world. Snorkelling fans will discover the treasures of underwater life here. The island is specialised in the sale of black pearls and the production of coloured sarongs, as well as “tivaevae” — patchwork quilting and handiworks. This local manufacture has great value because of its careful artisanal fabrication, and the pieces made are generally offered at important occasions.
Day 5 PALMERSTON ISLAND
Day 6 AT SEA
Day 7 INTERNATIONAL DATE LINE, EXTREME WEST
Day 8 APIA
Not far from the Wallis and Futuna archipelago, your ship will set sail towards Apia, capital of Western Samoa. Located in the Pacific ring of fire, this destination remains little-known by tourists. You will be perpetually surrounded by turquoise blue lagoons and will spot waterfalls here and there in an intense green environment. Visit Apia Museum to discover the history of the region and then head for Mulinu’u, the territory’s former ceremonial capital. As for the Palolo Deep Marine Reserve, it is home to magnificent underwater fauna and flora and attracts diving fans.
Day 9 MATA UTU, WALLIS ISLAND
A small town currently home to 1,100 inhabitants, Mata Utu is located on Wallis Island in the Wallis and Futuna archipelago. From afar, you will appreciate the colonial architecture of the Palace of the King; numerous traditional festivals are held in front of this building. Also discover the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Assumption, constructed in the 19th century and home to the seat of the Wallis and Futuna diocese. Be sure to take the unmissable walk along Lake Lalolao, which, at 82 metres deep, is certainly the most impressive of the crater lakes on Wallis. Mata Utu, a small corner of France lost in the Pacific, is also where the ships in the PONANT fleet are registered.
Day 10 ALOFI ISLAND
Located in the South Pacific, the Wallis and Futuna archipelago is a real jewel of nature, a territory that remains very little-known in tourism. Home to rare bird species unique to Oceania, the territory is surrounded by incredibly clear waters that protect a great variety of fish, dolphins, tortoises and rays. Stroll along the magnificent beaches of Alofi and the coast road. Inland, the Villa Malia de Leava Church on Futuna is known for its annual celebrations of the Virgin Mary, the patron saint of the village. This important event is eagerly awaited by devotees, who give a hundred pigs as an offering for this big religious festival.
Days 11 – 12 TAVEUNI
Located to the east of Vanua Levu in the heart of the Pacific Ocean, Taveuni is the third-largest island in Fiji, also called the “garden-island” because of its abundant flora, which includes the delicate and rare Tagimoucia flower, characterised by its red and white petals. The island is like a lush tropical forest, with nature trails, deserted beaches, many waterfalls melting into the vegetation, such as the Bouma Falls, and the Namena Marine Reserve. The island is justifiably reputed for ecotourism and scuba diving.
Day 13 LAUTOKA
Lautoka is the second largest city of Fiji. Located on the western side of the island of Viti Levu, 24 kilometres north of Nadi. Lying in the heart of Fiji’s sugar cane growing region, it is known as the Sugar City. Lautoka is the gateway to Fiji’s “Sun coast” a land of abundant sunshine, azure skies and dramatic grass-covered peaks chequered with sugar-cane fields, rural villages and quaint market towns.
Please Note: Itineraries are subject to change.
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